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Heaven On Earth: A History of American Utopias

BackStory on January 03, 2014 22:00

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    The New Year is here and many Americans will be resolving to make this one better than the last. But some Americans have sought to make changes to their lives and communities on a much larger scale. So in this episode of BackStory, we explore their efforts to create American utopias: from the search for transcendence amid rural beauty, or attempts to build perfectly ordered industrial towns, Ed, Brian, and Peter discover the utopian yearnings in the American past, and the ways they still resonate today. What allows some utopian communities to endure for decades, while others collapse within months? How have mainstream Americans viewed their utopian-minded brethren? And is America itself a utopian project?

    For more on the guests and stories featured in this episode, and for an array of resources on American utopianism, check out BackStory's website: http://backstoryradio.org/?p=11617

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